the vegan fork: Zen Palate

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Zen Palate

Order Date: January 26, 2006, evening

I don't consider Zen Palate to be a treat at all. Why? Because I only eat their food when I work late and have to order dinner. I have several restaurant choices with good vegetarian food, but I usually choose Zen Palate because their delivery is lightening fast.

I've tried many of their dishes, but they've added a bunch of new ones recently that I haven't tried yet. Oh, and great news! They used to have some non-vegan items (containing dairy and/or eggs), and they used to be kind of shifty about admitting that. They've redone their website, and in the FAQs section, they list the vegan items. Last time I looked, there were just a few things with egg and a couple of desserts with dairy. Well, I looked again while writing this, and they now only list the two desserts with dairy as non-vegan. I emailed them to make sure this is right, and their response (lightening fast, like the delivery) is that they've gotten rid of the eggs, and now the only non-vegan dishes are those two desserts. Check out their website, which is crazy-detailed, with pictures of most dishes and customer reviews.

On this night I ordered my favorite dish. It's the "Moo Shu Mexican Style." It's two spinach pancake/tortillas filled with a kidney bean and soy protein mixture, guacamole, a spicy carrot salad, and cous-cous. Actually, it's not cous-cous. That's what they call it, but I'm almost positive it's millet (which I love!).

It's a little hard to need a knife to cut them...or, to be in your office with the door shut so that no one can see you tearing at them with a hand/fork combination. The guacamole is good, except that some culinary delinquent decided to put a few tiny pieces of celery in it. They're small enough and few enough that you can kind of ignore them. The carrot slaw is a great combo of spicy and sweet, and, of course, the millet is great. It also comes with two little spring rolls (the flavor of which I can only describe as "deep fried"), but for an extra dollar you can have those replaced with the moo shu basil rolls, which are in rice paper and filled with basil, peanuts, jicama (?), and I don't know what else. But they're delicious. In general, I find the food to be inconsistent, though, so sometimes things that have previously been great show up mushy and flavorless.

And here's the sad "I'm about to eat dinner at my desk" picture...


Blogger fr2_kids said...

I have found your blog and will check back often. I don't live in NY, but I have visited there three times. I love it, and I can't wait until my next trip.

Jan 28, 2006, 9:21:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's your office/desk?! The furniture and environment is nicer than my living room! For eating dinner at your desk, that doesn't look too bad -- I usually have to steal pretzels from a cube down the hall and eat them in my beige messy space.

Feb 9, 2006, 8:07:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi ;)
oh... what distracted newz!
what do U think about it?

Feb 6, 2007, 7:30:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As part of restaurant watch I have a few comments about Zen Palate Management. We have been watching the company loose considerable customer counts over the past three years. At the same time prices have increased two to three times per year in the same period. Now I hear from conversations with the current store managers that the company is in serious debt to all the vendors, utilities and landlords??? What is going on?
A few days ago, on a follow up conversation with another manager in the restaurants I found out that they are closing the Union Square Restaurant. That they are building a restaurant called Zen Burger in Lexington Avenue by 46th Street. After several inquiries I found out that Zen Burger is a fast food vegetarian restaurant that the president James Tu is trying to launch at the expense of Zen Palate. Further investigations and conversations with high members of the management team for the parent company HOV Group Inc., tells of a down spiral trend in all aspects of the operations for the past two years. That the new president, has used all the resources of the company in the direction of his new vision and in the process, since he has no restaurant operational knowledge misspent a great deal of the companies funds to the point being in a tremendous debt. To further complicate matters there are rumors of lawsuits from some of the investors for mismanagement, this I could not confirm. We search the web and found that Mr. James Tu is a finance analyst and economist turned restaurant entrepreneur which may not be enough knowledge base to create and run a restaurant company.

The NYC Restaurant Watch

Oct 19, 2007, 12:22:00 PM  

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